The First Grade Curriculum
The goal in first grade is to have every child develop a love for reading and enter second grade reading at or above grade level, in terms of both fluency and comprehension. While working to achieve this goal, the children will be exposed to a variety of genres and authors throughout the school year.
Using the Writing Process, each child will publish several writing pieces throughout the school year. The goal in first grade is for each child to become an independent writer who utilizes the basic proper writing mechanics, spells appropriate words correctly and uses correct punctuation and grammar.
The mathematics program we use is called Everyday Mathematics. This unique program involves a spiraling of many mathematical concepts that are introduced and reintroduced throughout the year. This program allows children to learn new skills and concepts, provides thinking practice and develops problem-solving skills. All the activities and assignments are hands-on and involve various manipulatives and educational games to enhance the children’s learning. The lessons are often designed to relate to what is happening in children’s lives outside of school, linking mathematics to the real world. The following concepts will be taught this year: counting, comparing, grouping, tallying, patterns, addition, subtraction, number sense (understanding numbers and number relationships), geometry, attributes, place value, time, money and measurement.
Our social studies curriculum covers a variety of topics. Students begin the year learning to understand, respect and celebrate individualism and diversity through a “Me on the Map” unit. Our “Citizenship” study reinforces the importance of being a good, responsible citizen and addresses the different roles and jobs that are required to make a community run smoothly and effectively. In our “Global Citizenship” unit, students will learn what it means to be a global citizen. They will come to understand how actions impact others globally. They will also be introduced to supply and demand, goods and services, natural resources and learn how these are transported around the world.
The three units that will be investigated and explored this year are “Space and Beyond,” “Light and Sound,” and “Animal Adaptations.” The Animal Adaptation unit will include a live animal component. During each unit of study, the children become scientists and investigators through a variety of hands-on experiences and experiments.
The children will learn how to successfully operate a Chromebook and will practice basic computer and keyboarding skills. Additionally, children will have regular opportunities to use various educational apps to complement, extend and/or enrich their everyday learning.
To reinforce what is being taught in class, I will send home weekly “Homework Packets.” Homework assignments are given in a packet form to allow children to work at their own pace and give them some flexibility to complete it around their busy schedules. Homework is always due on a Friday, unless another day is specified at the top of the packet. If your child completes his/her homework early, it can be handed in before the due date, if it has been reviewed and signed by a parent. The children should be able to complete most of the homework independently and with ease.
Our buddies are in Mrs. Apa’s third grade class. Each first-grade child is paired with a third-grade buddy. Both classes gather periodically to read, write and do special projects and activities together.